Blue Jays’ Marcus Stroman saying all the right things
Marcus Stroman appeared on ET Canada earlier in the week, and talked about his HDMH brand, his charity work, and his excitement to work with new manager, Charlie Montoyo.
After a disappointing personal season, it’s easy for professional ball players to avoid the limelight for a while, or even to lose confidence and make excuses. However, Marcus Stroman just isn’t wired that way.
Appearing on ET Canada earlier this week, Stroman showed a typically positive attitude when talking about all kinds of different things in his life at the moment. He was promoting his #HDMH brand with a launch and partnership with Holt Refrew, but he also had a chance to talk about the charity work that he’s been doing, and the upcoming season with the Blue Jays.
For any Blue Jays fan watching the interview, I hope you shared the same feelings that I did about the 26 year old and his place with the Blue Jays going forward. With just two years remaining of club control it’s still up in the air whether or not Stroman will be a part of the long term future in Toronto, but things like this interview make me believe that he could be around for the long haul.
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He talked about how the proceeds for the event this week would go to “Breakfast For Youth At Risk”, as well as “other Canadian charities in the GTA area”. Supporting and investing in your own community (Granted, while promoting his personal brand, but still). Check.
Gushing about how much he loves being a part of the Blue Jays, and saying, “Me being Canadian, not Canadian, me feeling Canadian”, shows that he feels like he’s a part of the city, and the country that loves him and the team he plays for. Check.
When he was asked about new manager Charlie Montoyo, Stroman admitted that he doesn’t know his new skipper personally, but expressed excitement to work with him. Equally as important (to me anyway), it’s clear that he is passionate about the direction of the Blue Jays, and excited about being a part of the team going forward. That might seem like it should be a given, but you don’t always see players talk this way as they approach free agency. It really does seem genuine from Stroman.
"I mean honestly, I feel like I’m part Canadian. I’m American, but, I’ve been in Toronto since I was drafted in 2012, I’ve been here since 2014. I truly feel like I’m adopted, and I truly feel more Canadian than I do American at times. I love the city, I love the community, I love the people, I love the culture, I love everything about Toronto, so it’s easy for me to want to get out there and invest my time in the people and the community, and do collaborations with Canadian companies because it’s truly where I want to be."
Add it all up and to me, this is exactly what Blue Jays fans should be hoping to hear from arguably their most talented pitcher. 2018 was not his finest year by any stretch, but there’s little doubt that he’s much better than we witnessed this past season, and hopefully a healthier campaign awaits him for next year.
I understand that he can be a bit of a polarizing figure at times, but that’s often the case with a player as outwardly passionate as Marcus Stroman. The more I watch him and listen to him talk about his career and the Blue Jays, the more I’ve come to appreciate building around guys like him who really, genuinely care and want to be a part of this team. He’s clearly ready to embrace the challenge of a rebuild, working with a new bench boss, and finding a way to overtake the Yankees and Red Sox in the AL East. These are all the things we should look for in a team leader, and Stroman is saying all the right things right now.
It might be a rebuilding year for the Blue Jays in 2019, but expect big things from the charismatic right-hander next season. I know I do.